I can't even begin to describe the weekend except with pictures. I'm sure there will be many articulate blog posts from the terrific array of authors who were there with me.
☞ If you're looking for just the facts, not the words of somebody who's still floating about ten feet off the ground, CLICK HERE for a newspaper article from the Naperville Sun.
Thanks to the most amazing BOOK Enthusiasts at Anderson's Bookshops, I spent Friday morning at the terrific Woods Creek Elementary School in Crystal Lake. Although the weather was glorious (sunny and high 40s in Illinois in February?- Obviously planned just for me!), the outside of the school was hard to photograph. Instead, here's a picture that the kindergarten kids were flocking around. Tiny squares of each student's face make up the facade of the school. Note the magnifying glasses so they can pick out themselves and their friends. Note my strategically placed books. My new friend Gail from Anderson's and I conspired to get GLORY BE into all pictures.
I signed a ton of books before my presentations.
It was such fun being back in a school. I felt like Queen for the Day! The 4th grade had done a huge project around GLORY BE. They were eager to share their character posters. Ah, the details! The boys were fascinated with J.T.'s missing finger...
On Friday night, I signed books at Anderson's (did I mention what an amazing bookstore that is? Love it.), with Katherine Applegate.
I'm about half way through THE ONE AND ONLY IVAN, her new book. So far, WOW.
Up bright and early for the Saturday morning event. Again, pictures best describe that day. Even the cellphone pics my new friends have already emailed me.
I spoke first, at 8:30. Then I got to enjoy the rest of the day! The book talks by two of Anderson's enthusiastic staff, about all their favorite new books made me wish I were still a school librarian.
Well, maybe not. Right now I'm pretty happy being Debut Author.
Here I am, as tweeted by my new favorite librarian, Mr. Schu.
(An aside, I sat next to Illinois author Barb Rosenstock at the signing. She told him her 13-year-old son checks his blog constantly for great book recommendations. I'm going to be checking that blog often. Such good info.)
During the breaks, we got to sign books and schmooze with fabulous teachers and librarians. These ladies love Elvis. Loved my stories about Tupelo and my career as a childhood Elvis impersonator.
Chris just emailed the picture (3rd grade teacher, on my left). She swears she's been to Graceland ten times! Her students love Elvis!
During our breaks all morning, we could pop over to the huge room, filled with books, next to the gigantic ballroom where we were speaking and breakfasting. By the end of the day, frazzled but happy, I'd sold and signed every copy of GLORY BE Anderson's had brought to the event.
Now home, floating off the earth that so many amazing book lovers chose my book to celebrate. Thanks, Becky and all your buddies at Anderson's Bookshop. What a day!